the assertion " that the Poles were evading participation in the common
struggle as entirely unfounded and inconsistent with the actual facts of the
case, and furthermore that he could not accept the motives given for the
refusal to permit further recruiting of Polish citizens still in the U.S.S.R."
Had there been any evidence of goodwill on the part of the Soviet
Government an army of 300,000 Poles could easily have been raised in
Russia. But that Government did not consider the presence on its
territory, of a foreign army who., man for man, stood independent in
mind and spirit, ready and willing to fight for the independence of
Poland, as desirable,
" In obedience to our orders and to die best of our ability/' wrote General
Tokarzewsld-Karaszewicz, Second-in-Cornmand of the Polish Army in
U.S.S.R.,* " we were fully prepared to forget September 17,1939, to forget
our wrongs, the despair of hundreds of thousands of Poles, the whole
tragedy of our country for which die Soviets are partially responsible. We
were willing to stretch out our hand in the name of a better tomorrow for
the world. We did extend our hand, but we were never able to discover
any sincere response to our overtures during our sejour in the U.S.S.R.
" I must state that we were ready, right up till the last moment (if all the
promises the Russians made to us had been kept), and we sincerely desired
to fight side by side with the Red Army against the Germans. But we
could not, and did not, wish to fight with the tatters of our Army, while our
comrades were still lying in prisons, dungeons and labour carnps, and while
hundreds of thousands of our families were undergoing terrible poverty and
hardships and Moscow at the same time was questioning the citizenship of
THE MISSING PEOPLE
" What the Polish General (Sikorski) had to say to the Red Army Marshal
(Stalin) was something like this—in spirit, if not in words :—
" I am here to find out what has become of the Polish people, men,
women and children, more than one million of them^ whom your men arrested
in 1939, then transported into Russia's hinterland, and whom you have
since kept in prison camps, labour camps, and jails of every sort.
" I am here to see to it that these people, more than a million of thems are
*e I am here to see to it that these people are allowed to volunteer for
military service—so that a Polish Army, raised from the Soviet prison
camps, shall shortly be able to go forth to fight the Germans."
(Eve Curie," Journey Among Warriors," New York, 1943, p. 264).
A few weeks after the Soviet's decree which announced the release of the
Polish citizens from the Russian prisons and forced labour camps, the
Polish authorities were obliged to conclude that not all their citizens
were being released and also, that a great many of them had disappeared
In many cases only the weaker among the Polish prisoners were
sent back from the labour camps to join the Polish Army. Since each
* Dywizja Lwdw (The Lwow Infantry Division), Jerusalem, 1944.